Offbeat and up-and-comers day!

Hello Music Hounds,

Let’s get offbeat and up-and-coming today, shall we?

First to the offbeat.  Idolator published a pair of funny photos side by side; we have a pair of blue- and green-haired punks.    Katy Perry was at a Paris studio session, haired dyed deep blue.  And Nicki Minaj arrived in Narita, Japan, hair a vivid shade of green!  (Okay, it was a green wig, and I suppose Katy and Nicki’s unusual hair colours aren’t exactly ‘news’.)  What made Katy blue and what made Nicki envious, we don’t yet know.

Anyway, I’m sure these fashion statements are the cue for Taylor Swift to dye her hair purple.  Now that would be news but I do think it ain’t gonna happen until hell freezes over!  All these fancy hair colours make one wish for the simple days of Debbie ‘Blondie’ Harry and nothing fancier than bleach and peroxide!  (And that was a gal who really could sing.)

Elliott Yamin is a lesser-known name than he should be.  In his catchy new single “Gather ‘Round,” he says he’s singing in a “Brand New Groove.”  Hmm, it’s a kinda Stevie Wonder groove, Elliott!  What’s more the soul-inflected singing is also reminiscent of Stevie.  And I mean that as a huuuge compliment.  Anyway that’s real singing from an artiste with some musical promise.

Train’s ‘Drive By’ is in an altogether different groove from Elliott Yamin’s new release but similar to it in being refreshingly musical and rhythmic, and with clean acoustic sounds.  Train have released a fancy-dance video on the making of their music-video, featuring a California vineyard and badass cars. Actually, the music is good enough to stand on its own without any upmarket ‘making of’ video!

Am I the only one seeing a trend?  The sexes in music – excluding the few exceptions that ‘prove the rule’ – have fallen into two distinctly different ‘grooves’.  A lot of near-established female singers (e.g. Perry and Minaj) can’t seem to hold their own musically and vocally, and have to rely on heavy synthesization and in-studio over-production (Mad-onna started the trend, of course).  However, the lads (e.g. Yamin and Train) seem to display genuine musical talent and can actually sing, and carry themselves without the excess of synthesization and in-studio over-production.

It’s a pity Corinne Drewery was never appreciated in America . . . I bet none of my readers have even heard of her!

Bye Y’all,

Shane

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